Dundee University Students’ Association Student Representative Council Minutes Meeting held 26/02/2013 This meeting was held after DUSA’s AGM which began at 6pm. Attendees: OO, IM, GD, LG, KW, KJ, DS, MB, HD, CF, FL, LT, AM, ST, SK, DW, FN, IS, JD, JH, MT, JL, AV, AW, IK, RD, DM, SG, AJ, MA, JM Apologies: AM, KSB, LS, HE, GBU, DS, AS, JR, JS Agenda Item
Minutes of Previous Meeting
Minutes uploaded to DUSA website
Minutes passed unanimously. Updates No questions were asked regarding the updates. AOCB Reading Lists VPCC looking for support of SRC for getting set reading lists published prior to term time. VPCC taking this to L&T committee and then Senate, working with UoD. Every student would have their reading lists minimum of two weeks ahead of term. SRC agreed that this can be supported. ELC GD gave update regarding Election Liaison Committee. They have been making sure all candidates are students, implementing RON, discussing what constitutes a nominal token, and arranging t-shirts. Awareness Trying to raise awareness of SRC, get in contact with KW as soon as possible. Conduct of SRC Chair Issues were raised during the last meeting – no one could hear chair, people putting their hand up and not asked in order, some chairing issues and issues with election liaison committee. OO unhappy with the decision but rather deal with the issue during SRC instead went through Exec. Possibility of racist comment made to SRC.
ST takes the Chair so that OO no longer needs to be impartial. OO stated that it is only rational that if members cannot hear him then they point this out to him. LG contested that this happened multiple times in one half hour period and it did not help. There were issues regarding controlling the Council and ensuring everyone has a chance to speak. Members have felt that the Chair has made comments that have made discussion go off on a tangent and cut off relevant discussion. LG stated the allegedly racist comment, which was said to an SRC member who was offended by the comment: “I have been looking for you like an African has been looking for an American visa.” OO stated that he was not told at the time what he said was offensive and apologised that he offended someone. OO quoted the DUSA website in regards to it stating it is the role of the Chair to liaise with the Dep Pres, Hon Sec and VPE. As Chair has to remain impartial had no choice but to discuss certain issues outside of the Council. LG had issues with his complaint regarding the ELC as OO was running in the election. Believes that issue could have been raised at SRC with ST taking the chair. DUSA’s website does not supersede DUSA’s Bye Laws. OO stated that he discussed the process of the choice of a member for the ELC and he did not have a problem with the member chosen. He wished for a second opinion on this and discussed it with a number of members before going to the Dep Pres. LG stated that OO apparently said that he had a preference for who should be on the panel which brings in allegations of bias as OO was running. IK asked if other member agreed with LG’s comments. KJ, MB and AW all agreed that have been ignored for male members with their hands up. GD feels that rather than deal with the issues OO is deflecting the points away. DW stated that a lot of what has happened could have been down to human error but it is certainly something OO should look at in the future. OO stated that if it happens again members should call him up on it. SG stated that she was unhappy with OO’s response to allegations of racism. OO apologised for offending people with his comments. SRC agreed that OO needs to take on this criticism for the next SRC meeting and if issues still arise then this can be dealt with then. Mike Arnott MA has completed his two terms as Rector’s Assessor. He has been a great addition to the SRC and University Court, and a fantastic servant to the students.
MA stated that it has been a joy to work with so many students and that we have a cracking rector in Brian Cox. He has attempted to be the best possible help for students, and bit his tongue when necessary. He will miss the SRC far more than Court. The next Rector’s Assessor will be Bernadette Malone, a member of DUSA’s Board and the CE of Perth Council. Member Resignation Members were informed that Joanne Grewar, Councillor without Portfolio has handed in her resignation. SRC Chair Election The issue of whether the SRC Chair should be elected was discussed. The position has been in place for three years, and was introduced as it would deny a members’ constituents if they took on the role of Chair. If SRC is more vocal and requires lobbying then this will go through the Chair. Library Opening Hours Library opening hours were discussed, and the possibility of them opening earlier in the mornings at the weekend. A motion could be submitted however it won’t be able to changed quickly due to staff contracts, budgeting and other issues. Library Café Issues The fact that the Library Café sells hot water was discussed. This was brought in as DUSA were losing money when giving it away for free, but Pres will look into the issue again. The possibility of a facility where students can heat up food was also discussed, but there were worries of the mess created and the possibility for students to abuse the facilities.